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ATV is "DEAD", HK Government denied ATV license renewal!

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Source: The Standard

Images: The Sun

Youtube: Appledaily

 

 

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The Chief Executive in Council has refused to renew the license for the troubled broadcaster when it expires on November 30 this year, putting a final nail in the coffin for Hong Kong's oldest broadcaster.

 

The government yesterday notified ATV that it will be given until April 1, 2016, to operate with its spectrum revoked on the same date. Up to 700 employees will be made redundant.

The decision on the fate of the 58-year-old station came amid a 24-hour rollercoaster ride, with ATV announcing on air on Tuesday night that it had secured a "white knight" investor in HKTV's Ricky Wong Wai-kay. But Wong denied yesterday there was any such deal. Then came news yesterday morning of another mystery investor signing a deal with major ATV shareholder Wong Ching. But this investor is unlikely to push through with the transaction as the memorandum of agreement hinged on an ATV license renewal.

 

Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development, Gregory So Kam- leung said Exco had "considered all relevant developments and facts, including the news bulletin by ATV last night and the clarification from HKTV." He revealed that eight minutes past midnight yesterday he received a letter that "a few people had an indicative offer for ATV but there was no mention of a deal." He said the non-renewal decision was "well-deliberated" and that ATV was given enough time to submit its restructuring plan by Tuesday's deadline.

 

Accountancy firm Deloitte was appointed by the courts to oversee the station. In November, ATV requested leeway until the end of last month to give it time to develop a restructuring plan. On January 2, Deloitte asked the Executive Council not to make a final decision because of the ongoing restructuring. After seeking legal advice, the government gave ATV until March 31 to make its proposals. "By the deadline, no specific proposals were made by ATV on restructuring," So said. "The CE in Council also considered the request in the submission for the extension of the deadline and the information made available this afternoon, but was not satisfied that a sufficient case has been put forward to justify any further extension of time."

 

It is the first time in broadcasting history that an existing license was not renewed. So and Communications Authority head Ambrose Ho Pui-him warned that if ATV committed another serious breach of the law within the next 12 months, its license will be revoked immediately. The government will set up a task force to ensure the speedy resolution of various issues and to minimize any adverse impact of the non-renewal decision. The government has invited RTHK to provide an analogue TV service channel to give audiences one more choice from April 1 next year up to 2020. "For the spare spectrum, we will look at the entire situation and work according to Broadcasting Ordinance and spectrum policies to decide how to allocate them," So said. "Currently we cannot tell how we are going to arrange it." So said if ATV closes down before the scheduled timetable, RTHK will take over the service.

 

Calling yesterday "the darkest day in Hong Kong," ATV's major investor Wong Ching said he was not surprised by the license renewal failure. He attributed it to "a series of conspiracy and deception regarding the sale of the shares of ATV in these two years." He added it was "the price paid by a conscientious media station."

Edited by GTR

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they closed ATV?! But it's like part of hk's tradition... although it seems like no one watches their shows anymore

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Wow .. din know its that bad until they are not renewing their license :|

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Never watched ATV series so far... last time did while Joey Meng is over there...

any way is sad too

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tvb is a stronger company and its not surprisng that its using its power to gobble up a smaller network

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sad to hear that... they used to have some nice shows... and many successful actors and actress out there are from aTV...

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that is very sad news. Been around for so long. Lets see hwat happens next.

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Used to watch a lot of great canton dubbed anime on their. I also remember Donnie Yen's fist of fury, it was a great series. It's sad to see them go. I guess competition is tough and not to mention people's tv trends.

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Just feel bad for all the artists & employees... All the best to them!

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This has been a long time coming. Its truly sad especially for the employees who are about to lose their jobs. Hopefully they will be able to find new work and support their families quickly.

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RIP ATV. Time to give the license to HKTV. No excuses.

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why atv has been allowed to struggle for so long and put it's workers on the brink of redundancy/working without pay for an extended period of time is unbeknownst to anyone...but drawing a final close on this chapter officially will hopefully allow their current staff make a fresh start in terms of jobs..

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they should have just let ATV get the license that way TVB has some kind of competition instead of just knowing they dont have to try and simply stick to makign crappy series to survive

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Which artists are still under ATV? I wonder where they will be headed... More monopoly for TVB. Still rooting for HKTV to bring in the competition

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Oh no ATV has been around for many years and their series are quite good, what a shame

 

 

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have never watched ATV...it's a shame to hear it is closing down though

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they've dragged it long enough. time to bring some real competition for tvb. hopefully nowtv will be a worthy competitor and will bring the standards up across the industry.

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Sad but ATV hasn't produced any watchable dramas lately. Licenses need to be provided to people who can produced watchable dramas like HKTV.

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ATV has been holding on for a while....Sad to know in this business world that things like this will happen

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ATV is finish! It is not just todays' problems. Back in 20 years ago, it had been more than one owners or investors tried to took over hopefully to change and improve the ratings! But they didn't realize the main point was the quality of the shows that had never improved! So boring. People had to choose TVB instead.

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I always enjoyed ATV over TVB. TVB has a bunch of actors/actresses that can't act or sing. They can't even come up with good storylines now a days. Its a shame to see them go

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so sad since they've been around forever, but at the same time... their shows are so bad.

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